Fallout 4’s Far Harbor expansion is a massive improvement to the game. The use of assets and effects create a solid environment and narrative. However in some places more than others the game feels lacking. In Far Harbor the player must travel to a new island and resolve a conflict that rises there.
While there are some holes in the game play of Far Harbor the whole experience feels extensively better than the Commonwealth and Fallout 4’s base game. Far Harbor includes several improvements, great experiences and some bad ones. First, the good; Companions, interaction with the story and atmosphere. While there is only one companion in the expansion he is actually quite good. His story and actions are actually interesting and he seems to interact more with the separate factions. Speaking of factions the three featured are all well-developed and present a good back story for you to make your own decisions which have a real impact on the story. Instead of 4 different ways to say no, Far Harbor uses factions like New Vegas to decide the closing of the story. Lastly what I find to be the most interesting important part of Far Harbor is its environment and ambiance. The use of graphics and sound are incredible overall they form a very pleasing atmosphere, which is leaps and bounds better than the original game. Included in the atmosphere are some new creatures. The creatures are actually quite tough and really seem to emphasize the foggy, dense environment. Other mediocre and mild additions include new settlements and some new weapons. Now that the good has been explained here is where most of the bad lies, the quests. Many quests in Far Harbor are extremely boring. These mostly consists of running and moving with very basic fighting. They are almost all fetch quests. I would like to say it would be nice for Bethesda to think outside of the box for these quests, but they have already done it, and it is disastrous. What should have been an easy puzzle section turned into what seemed liked hours of boring, grueling first person puzzles. These puzzles consisted of a simulation using the settlement system to place blocks to guide a beam. It is a sort of laser and mirror puzzle. In total there are 8 of these which are repetitive, annoying and just boredom inducing. Overall game play may be good in some aspects such as environment, but the quests leave a lot to be wanted.
The sound of Far Harbor is somewhat important in terms of ambiance and music which does a good job setting the tone. Otherwise the voice acting and sound effects are practically the same as the base game and mediocre at best. Sound in an action game is very important and still leaves something to be desired.
A basic narrative of Far Harbor starts with a case presented to you by Nick Valentine. The case involves a kidnapping which takes the player to Far Harbor. Far Harbor is an island that is home to three main factions. These are a group of synths, the Children of Atom and lastly the people of Far Harbor. The narrative comes together very well and actually gives a better ‘true’ RPG Experience than the base game. This is due to the player themselves not having to be attached to the story in any way since its not somebody you know that is being kidnapped. In total the narrative is quite good.
While technically the graphics and texture quality remain the same as the base game of Fallout 4 several improvements made in the way graphics and effects are used inside the game. Overall with the use of fog, landscapes and lake creatures Bethesda created a very atmospheric experience with a chilling feel. All in all the graphics although technically not improved are still an important aspect of Far Harbor.
Far Harbor is a real improvement on not only the poor precedent set by the Automatron and Wasteland Workshop DLCs, but an improvement of the whole game of Fallout 4. However with the DLCs hefty price tag of 25 USD (€ 24.99 / £ 19.99), I can not recommended this piece at its full price. Far Harbor, for its price, leaves a few things to be desired.
score: 6/10, Above Average